I wish I had kept a list of every group, person or organization we have been accused of hating over the years.
Teachers, cops, Republicans, Democrats, lawyers, former district attorneys in Warren and Washington counties, Alexander West, etc. That's just what comes to the top of my head in a couple of seconds.
The truth is, speaking for myself, there really isn't any personal animosity involved in my news coverage.
That said, I had to laugh at Glens Falls Mayor Jack Diamond's diatribe in last week's Glens Falls Chronicle about one of my blog posts. He is quoted as telling the paper I have "hatred" for Glens Falls, the city where I have worked for 26-plus years, because of blog posts I have written about some of the city's questionable infrastructure decisions.
Now I travel all over our region for work. I see who has good roads and bad roads, which municipalities focus on upkeep and which don't. I have written extensively about the bad condition of a number of state highways, coverage that county leaders and a resident of Ridge Road in Queensbury believe spurred the state to take some action.
So I guess I hate the entire state, too.
The mayor's rant reminded me of a story I heard a couple of years ago.
I wrote an article during the last race for Washington County district attorney in which the then-challenger questioned the incumbent. The article was the topic of conversation in the courthouse the following day. I was told a nice old court attendant said to his colleagues something along the lines of, "I was surprised (by the article), I thought Don liked Kevin (Kortright)."
Personally, I always got along well with Kortright. But his challenger, Tony Jordan, raised questions about his tenure that we couldn't ignore, or the Jordan campaign would have accused us of favoring Kortright. Damned if you do, damned if you don't.
Unfortunately, if we are doing our jobs as journalists, we have to write things that will make people mad or upset at times. It seems fewer and fewer members of the public (and apparently at least one elected official as well) understand or accept that. But that's just the way it is.
-- Don Lehman